Apple suppliers already producing parts for a 'mini' iPad: report
The 'new iPad' is shown as people pack the Apple Store in Toronto on Friday, March 16, 2012. (Nathan Denette / THE CANADIAN PRESS)
Published Wednesday, October 3, 2012 11:39AM EDT
Last Updated Wednesday, October 3, 2012 11:53AM EDT
Apple’s suppliers have reportedly started producing a smaller version of the iPad, as the tech giant attempts to stay ahead of its market rivals.
The Wall Street Journal reports that, for the last month, Asian suppliers for Apple have been mass producing a screen for a mini version of its popular iPad tablet computer.
The smaller tablet is reported to have a 7.85-inch liquid crystal display, which is nearly two inches smaller diagonally than the latest version of the full-sized iPad released in March.
Last month, technology blog AllThingsD reported that Apple will unveil a smaller tablet in October.
Since Apple defined the category with the release of its iPad, the tablet market has heated up with new competitors offering a variety of form factors.
In July, Google introduced the Android-based Nexus 7, a lower-cost tablet with a seven-inch screen.
The latest model of Amazon’s Kindle tablet, Fire, was released in September with prices beginning at US$159, down from US$199 for the old model.
While the iPad is significantly more expensive, beginning at $519, Apple continues to maintain a slight edge in the tablet market.
A report released by the Pew Research Centre on Monday shows 22 per cent of Americans own a tablet computer – double the number from a year ago.
The report showed that 52 per cent of tablet-owners used iPads, compared to 81 per cent a year ago, while 48 per cent now own an Android-based device and 21 per cent own a Kindle Fire.